Sunday, December 31, 2006

happy new year

Hoping you and your families all have a wonderful joy-filled new year.
A very few have wondered why I have not been posting on the yahoo boards.
Sorry, I don't miss me posting at all. I find many of the discussions to be bizarre at the least.
Take the recent posts about heating rams horns....yes, on live order to turn them.
Now just in the glances I have seen of the posts....I have to assume that the horns are to be bent away from the head.
Why? One guess....they are going to be bad horns....and the ram would need to be culled?
A second guess....they are bad horns and the ram could not be sold?
What ever happened to the laws of genetics?
If the paternal ram has bad horns, might he not pass those bad horns to his sons...and his daughters? Why would a breeder take a chance on breeding such a ram?
Spots are a dime-a-dozen....modified colors are a-dime-a-dozen. As far as I can see rams themselves are a-dime-a-dozen.
What then would cause a busy breeder to bother to heat horns, put weights on horns...or even cut the horns?
Is it possible that there are so many rams out there breeding with close or bad horns....that breeders feel forced into trying to physically change the horns?
Hey, if this idea catches on...we might as well dye the lambs into the colors that are selling for that spring! Rosey-gold, and lavender-brown. Order your dye packets now.
What in the world would induce breeders into such behaviour?
It confounds my imagination. Has any breeder out there heard that genetics are passed from adult sheep into their off-spring?
Now, I have know several rams who had beautiful wide sweeping horns....but couldn't produce nice horns in his ram lambs. And, I have bred rams with tea-cup...ugly horns, who produced beautiful wide horns in their ram lambs.
How CAN this happen? That old word genetics again. The ewe will also carry horn genetics.
My guess from the adult rams being that these close-horned rams produce many bad horned ram lambs who have to be culled. Their daughters may also be carrying bad horn genes....but these daughters ARE being sold.
Go look at your adult rams. Can the shears get between the horn and the cheek? If not why are you keeping that ram? He is only going to pass those horns down to all his off-spring. Go find a new ram with nice wide horns.
Some things just defy common sense.


At 2:01 PM, Blogger Emporium said...

Mary Ellen, I had a post all set to go and this is what is was
WHAT???? it big hugh letters. I could hardly believe my ears. I sure miss you guys spots and all.
John and Jane Eager

At 9:20 AM, Blogger Juliann said...

Or get rid of the horns altogether like I did! Don't have to cut, heat, bend, or hang weights on what isn't there. lol!
Peeps you are missed on the lists but I can understand taking a break now and then.

Happy Near Year!

At 11:36 AM, Blogger Bill Stearman said...

I'm with you Mary Ellen!


If anyone wants a ram with good horns that don't need to be bent ... have them call me around the first of November when I butcher 12 to 20 ram lambs that I can't sell or use!

Happy New Year, my friend! May common sense prevail in 2007 ... ;-)

At 1:54 PM, Blogger Michelle at Boulderneigh said...

I must be reading a different list, because I thought the recent posts were an answer to someone asking how to "heat and bend" for a friend who has a Boer billy with close horns. Still not a good idea to me, but since Boers are meat goats raised to be eaten and not kept as long as many Shetlands, perhaps not quite as objectionable?


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